"Oh, remember this: There is never a time when we may not hope in God. Whatever our necessities, however great our difficulties, and though to all appearance help is impossible, yet our business is to hope in God, and it will be found that it is not in vain."
~ George Muller, quoted in ~ The Roller Coaster of Unemployment: Trusting God for the Ride by Sarah M. Hupp
Although our family has been touched over the past couple of years with the affects of unemployment, and I could share several stories of how God has provided for us in the midst of this uncertainty, that was not the first memory that came to me when I was contemplating this quote. Many of my readers know that we have two beautiful daughters, ages 7 and 9, who were adopted from China. In the beginning of our adoption journey, we knew that the financial realities of such an undertaking would be difficult at best . . . . but we actually did have a few resources at first. So we began our first adoption, and through a long series of circumstances, we managed to meet all of the financial deadlines that are required for the mountain of paperwork and "red tape" that goes into an international adoption. We brought Gracie home in November, 2002 at the age of 22 months.
And then, a few months after we returned from our first trip to China, we "found" Annie on an adoption website. She was on a waiting child list because of her Cerebral Palsy, but somehow we just knew she was our daughter. But we also knew that, by that time, we had already invested all of our resources in our first adoption, and there was simply no possibility of coming up with the funds for a second trip to China. I called the adoption agency, inquiring about this little girl, 15 months old at the time, and was told that if we were interested we needed to fax our paperwork immediately.
Apparently, as the story was given to us, these children each have a file that is sent to an adoption agency for a designated number of weeks (I think we were told three months, total), and if there are no inquiries, then the child's file is sent to another agency. If there is no interest in adopting the child at the second agency, the file is then sent on to a third, and final, agency. This was the final stop for Annie's file . . . . and it was the last week before it would be returned to the Chinese Center for Adoption Affairs, not to be sent out again. If she was not "spoken for" within the next couple of days, her file would be returned and she would never again have the opportunity to be adopted.
So, even though we had NO idea how in the world we would ever be able to figurel out all of the financial requirements of an international adoption, I immediately faxed a "Letter of Intent," indicating that we were interested. This, I believe, put a "hold" on her file to give us a few more days to figure out what we were going to do. At the same time, we requested a copy of her medical records to take to our pediatrician. I called the drs. office, and they agreed to have our pediatrician review the medical records immediately, as soon as I could bring them in. When the fax arrived, I rushed down to the drs. office, the pediatrician took the records, and said she would call me as soon as she possibly could.
Within a half-hour of returning home, I received the call. The pediatrician told me that there was nothing she could see in the medical records that would indicate a situation that was going to get worse than what was already going on . . . . which we still didn't know exactly what "that" was, but it appeared to be minor Cerebral Palsy that had great potential for being successfully treated with therapy. That was all we needed to know! We needed to know that, with God's help, we would be capable of caring for a child with limitations, and this was definitely something that God could take care of.
So, the flurry of paperwork was underway - but that was just the beginning of the many times and ways that God gave us the hope, the courage, the confidence to move forward with an adoption of a precious little girl; a situation that seemed "impossible" in human terms. From one event to another, through the entire nine months that we waited to bring Annie home, God brought people into our lives, through our church and our community, to provide every penny that we needed for our adoption and our travel to China. Tomorrow I want to share with you a few of the amazing things that we experienced while watching God at work, making the "impossible" a reality for our family and for our Annie.
Please take a minute to visit some of the other participants in this week's IOW meme, and then leave YOUR link back to your blog so we can visit you!